Arvon at Home Writing Week: Theatre

Get your creative brain and your script into shape

Monday November 23rd - Friday November 27th 2020


Whether you’re looking to give your imagination a workout and or gear up for the marathon of finishing a first draft, this course is designed for anyone interested in writing drama. It offers all the tools and techniques to get your mind into gear and delve into the specifics of writing for the stage – from germinating an idea all the way through to plotting and performance.

Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro, this open course is a creative exploration of the whole playwrighting process. We’ll kick off with the building blocks of idea generation; move onto techniques to get your characters, plot, structure and dialogue into tip top condition; and finally examine how to transform thoughts into words and action, and ultimately bring them to life onstage.

There’ll also be opportunities to discuss how the theatre industry works; the reality of being a playwright; and techniques for maintaining your writing practice after the course has finished. And whilst the focus is theatre, we can happily support screen and radio interests too.

We’ll help you to make ‘Arvon at Home’, turning your own place into a writing cocoon, capturing the transformative power of our acclaimed Arvon residential courses: two brilliant author-tutors at your service, a caring and sharing group, the time and space to devote to your writing, invaluable feedback, new writing pals, and the unique creative progress that happens in a dedicated week. 

You will be offered the best of a classic Arvon residential week, with a few virtual tweaks. Spot the difference: a carefully balanced combination of tips to help you focus, daily morning workshops, one-to-one tutorials with both tutors, three evening get-togethers to chat about the day’s work, a mid-week guest reading offer, the celebratory Friday-evening collective reading, and lots of time and encouragement for you to write every day. You will receive a free ticket to our Wednesday evening Live Guest Reading.

All gatherings, one-to-one or group, will be delivered via our own Arvon Zoom, so you’ll need to have a reliable internet connection. Your Arvon Centre host will be on call to offer support as you need it, including any help you may need with your computer set-up.

To participate, and to get the most out of the week, you’ll need to turn up online for all planned morning sessions, Monday to Friday. You should also set aside your afternoons for tutorials and independent writing time.  Last but not least, we urge you to read your tutors’ published work before the week starts.

Dates: Monday 23 November 5pm  — Friday 27 November 9pm
Cost: £375

If you have any questions about how the week works, or are on a low income and would like to apply for a grant to reduce the course fee please contact (grants are limited to four places).


I had the chance to speak with two well respected tutors about my work. Being able to do this in one-to-one tutorials was excellent and not reduced in any way by being on Zoom. A good chance for some very good advice. I am now determined to set to work on my writing.

—Writing Week Participant

What a lovely week—worked so well. It’s not the Hurst, but something different and equally special.

—Writing Week Participant


4.30pm—6.30pm: Everyone gathers online in Arvon’s Zoom Writing House. The Arvon Centre Director, Eliza Squire, will welcome you and the tutors, giving you an overview of the week, technology support, and some ideas for making your writing ‘cocoon’. You’ll get to meet everyone, ask questions, and settle in. Catriona and Natasha will ask you to start thinking about your writing, perhaps setting an exercise. There’s likely to be some homework for tomorrow morning.


10am—1pm: Everyone meets online for the morning workshop, which includes writing exercises, discussion and comfort breaks.

2pm—4pm: One-to-one tutorials lasting about 20 minutes each. You have one tutorial with each tutor during the week; the rest of the afternoon is your time to think and write.

6pm—7pm: Tutor readings and Q&A, hosted by Eliza.


The timing is just like yesterday…

10am—1pm: Morning Workshop

2pm—4pm: Afternoon Tutorials

5.30pm-6pm: Midweek check-in (optional)


7.15pm: The Arvon Wednesday Live Guest Reading with Owen Sheers—you get a free ticket to this.


10am—1pm: Morning Workshop

2pm—4pm: Afternoon Tutorials

6pm—7pm: Informal evening get-together (optional)


10am—1pm: Morning Workshop

2pm—4pm: Afternoon Tutorials


6pm—8pm: Friday evening culminates with a celebratory reading where you have the chance to share some of your new writing. Expect laughter, tears and a huge sense of pride for all you have learned, written and achieved this week. There’ll be plenty of virtual hugs.

And then...

The week doesn’t stop here. You now have a writing community. Stay in touch. Share your work with each other, and take it forward.



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